This 8-track independent release Dan Cimaglio – Let the Light Shine(dropped Jan 8) is a little lo-fi in production, but the instrumentation shines in Dan’s poignant tunes.
The lyrics are trapped a bit in simplicity, but Dan manages to construct his light melodies expertly around each word, his voice while not strong has sincerity & a gentleness that translates to what a believable in an expressive performance.
“You’re the Starlight,” from its title sounds a little cliched but the song is strong, & well-played. “Blue Eyed Barefoot Boy,” is far better. Dan showcases a wonderful storytelling style. Not folk but exemplary singer-songwriter resonance. His words are good in this song. The deep thumping drums bring out the song’s power through atmosphere & mood. The lead guitar is all applied with clarity & beauty. Fluid & imaginative.
Joining Dan (rhythm acoustic guitars) is Domenic Bucci (lead guitar/acoustic 12-string/bass guitar/ baritone/classical guitars, percussion & producer).
“Like a Baby,” is an old-fashioned country upbeat song with vintage guitar picking. It’s done quite well. Production-wise? It could’ve been better. The song itself is charming. Add fiddles & accordion & it could be rousing.
The songs are passable, minimalist in instrumentation but not thin, typical of the genre.
Lights shining through, I can see you in my dreams, under my wing, type lyrics,etc. If Dan can write lyrics with just a little more poetic country edge & leave the elementary language behind his melodies will be lifted higher to give it all a better lyrical texture. His melodies deserve that. Keep Bucci’s fine guitar work but a better producer would offer a more engaging, fuller sound.
“Before the Sun Goes Down,” is good but deserves better lyrics & maybe a different key or tuning. His voice is limited so he shouldn’t reach. I like Dan’s approach but needs guidance in order to not sound like others who came before him. I say this because the songs have potential.
It’s delivery that needs some attention. Better vocal intonation, phrasing & understanding which keywords (inflection) in the lyric require emphasis would make Dan’s vocal more interesting. He doesn’t use enough vocal punctuation or emphasis. “Someday Peace,” sounds like a cohesive tune but feels like an accelerator that isn’t giving Dan the necessary gas.
The last cut is by far the best.
“Stranded,” Dan sings excellently with fluent lyrics. This is where he should be. Poignant, boldly stylish, articulate, & never goes for notes he can’t reach. Bucci’s guitars have clarity expressing sentimentality, & sadness. This is an exceptional, perceptive, delicate song. More like this & Dan will draw attention.
The 33-minute CD with lyrics is available at Bandcamp & https://dancimaglio.com/